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Hornets rookie Noah Vonleh out 6-8 weeks after sports hernia surgery

Sep 2, 2014, 5:45 PM EDT

2014 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot Getty Images

Noah Vonleh has some star potential. The No. 9 pick in the draft out of Indiana can rebound right now and has shown some midrange offensive game, he just needs to put in the work, get stronger, learn NBA defenses and get a lot of polish on his offensive game.

But that project is going to be on hold for a couple months as he has undergone sports hernia surgery that will cause him to miss at least the start of training camp and could keep him out until the start of the season. The Hornets made the announcement on Tuesday.

Charlotte Hornets forward Noah Vonleh underwent successful surgery today to repair a sports hernia suffered in a recent workout. The surgery was performed in Charlotte by Dr. B. Todd Henneford. Vonleh is expected to miss approximately 6-8 weeks.

Vonleh showed flashes of what could be in Las Vegas, particularly on the glass, but like a lot of rookies learning to bring it every night against better competition is a process.

“The thing I think he needs to do is: rebound. He has to continue to rebound. His second game in here he had 18 rebounds and it’s not been consistent,” Hornets Sumer League coach Patric Ewing told ProBasketballTalk at the time. “Do all the things that he can be consistent with until his offense and all the other parts of his game is able to get going. He has to get stronger. But he’s a talented guy and he’s going to be one of the guys who is going to have a bright future for our team and possibly could be a star in this league.”

This injury and the timing of it is a setback for a guy trying to get minutes in Charlotte. Hopefully he is able to get in some of training camp with the Hornets and can start to get in that work he needs to do.

  1. ProBasketballPundit - Sep 2, 2014 at 5:49 PM

    Ugh. We’re very thin at power forward. Scary to think this puts the burden of starter’s minutes on Cody Zeller.


    • 00maltliquor - Sep 2, 2014 at 6:54 PM

      What are you talking about? That’s your strongest position and it’s in a logjam right now!
      Marvin Williams

      Yeah Jefferson plays C, but it’s out of necessity since there are NO true C’s on the squad, so he plays it by default.

      • ProBasketballPundit - Sep 2, 2014 at 7:13 PM

        If that’s true then why did we start Josh McRoberts last year. He was the worst starting power forward in the league. Al Jefferson is a center and he’s great. Biyombo is a center and he’s a disaster on both ends of the floor. Zeller has been horrible, and now Vonleh is hurt.

        Marvin Williams is more of a small forward but it seems like he’ll be the starting 4. I’d rather see small ball with Williams than regular-ball and Zeller.

      • 00maltliquor - Sep 2, 2014 at 7:38 PM

        It’s not just your team that started him, seems like almost every team that sucker gets on starts him at one point or another. It’s one of life’s great mysteries. They even have him penned in to start for MIA.

        And you’re right about Williams, but they got him to play PF. I seen a lot of Bobcat games last year, but I hardly ever if at all some games seen them play Zeller, so I don’t really have an opinion on his skill level, but from the way you’re making him out to be, add on top that he hardly played LY (probably for a reason) it sounds like he’s a big dud.

        I wouldn’t give up on him just yet, he was alright in college. I think he may be useful eventually.

      • ProBasketballPundit - Sep 2, 2014 at 7:41 PM

        The 2013 was just historically awful so I guess I shouldn’t slam Zeller too much. I just don’t like him alongside MKG and Big Al in the starting lineup because none of them can shoot jumpers.

      • ProBasketballPundit - Sep 2, 2014 at 7:41 PM

        *2013 draft

    • sportsfan18 - Sep 2, 2014 at 7:31 PM


      Cody, while not great, isn’t as bad as you make him out to be.

      Unlike many rookies who hit a wall due to so many games and the season dragging on and on…

      Cody got stronger and played well in the 2nd half of last season.

      Yeah, he still has a ways to go, but he isn’t terrible.

      He’l only a rotation player now, not a starter.

      His first half of last season wasn’t good. His Jan was better and in Feb better yet, he got his TS% over 50% for the first month then.

      This from an article online…

      “After a bumpy start for Zeller filled with doubts, it’s cool that we’re seeing him develop and already show improvements in his game. He’s gone from the rookie who almost looks terrified to get the ball, to a player who makes decisions and acts on them. He’s stopped settling for jump shots and he gets to the basket. ”

      “Zeller is getting closer to the basket and drawing more fouls. Zeller’s free throws attempted per game have increased from 1.8 a game pre all star break to 3.4 a game post all star break.

      • ProBasketballPundit - Sep 2, 2014 at 7:39 PM

        Here’s my main problem with Zeller: he can’t shoot from outside meaning when he starts we have MKG, Zeller, AND Big Al all clogging the paint. Kemba Walker is one of my favorite players in the NBA and seriously underrated but he can’t go to work with all those non-shooters messing up the spacing.

        So maybe Zeller will be good someday but for now I really hope Marvin Williams works as a floor spacer until Vonleh is ready to play.

    • sportsfan18 - Sep 2, 2014 at 7:34 PM


      Again, Cody HAS to improve yet to be good…

      Here is a good article comparing Josh McRoberts and Cody Zeller. It was done by bobcatsbaseline dot com

      It lists the ugly things Zeller did…

      And it lists his strengths too…

      Since you seem to be a Charlotte fan… here you go…

      • ProBasketballPundit - Sep 2, 2014 at 8:00 PM

        That’s a pretty good article. And the author has the same first name as me.

        McRoberts frustrated me most of the time because I could never figure out what it was that he did well… but that article reminded me that he’s kind of like Boris Diaw. He doesn’t excel at any one thing but rather does a little of everything decently. He definitely handled the ball up high a lot last year and set up the offense when Kemba wasn’t around to do so.

        I still think Miami giving him 4 years was a terrible mistake. McBobs will get traded probably 3 or 4 times during that contract.

  2. avb300 - Sep 2, 2014 at 6:12 PM

    It’s not too bad…he’s 19 and isn’t expected to do much right away. He should be back for the start of the season anyway.

  3. jeffcor7 - Sep 2, 2014 at 6:28 PM

    Not that big of a deal. Marvin Williams is going to start and Cody will back him up. Noah wasn’t going to get that many minutes to begin with.

  4. succulentnipples - Sep 2, 2014 at 6:51 PM

    Big John Football feels bad for the fella with the sports hernia.

    • sportsfan18 - Sep 2, 2014 at 7:35 PM

      will he share his Goody’s or BC white powder pain killing “medicine”?

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